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Portman Group releases first report on alcohol responsibility measures

Published:  21 October, 2011

The Portman Group is today publishing its first annual report on alcohol responsibility measures in a bid to show how the industry regulates its marketing and the measures it takes to help reduce alcohol misuse.

The report also looks at the latest trends in alcohol consumption and alcohol-related harm and analyses alcohol's role in society.

Henry Ashworth, the Portman Group's new chief executive, said: "Today's report highlights our commitment to increase transparency around how we regulate alcohol marketing. We should be proud that the UK 's alcohol marketing regulations are already recognised as a model of good practice by other European countries and industries. They can become more effective if more consumers know how to complain about products and promotions they find irresponsible."

He added: "As well as publishing today's report, we have launched a three month public consultation to review our code of practice. We want people to help us maintain the right balance between protecting children and removing irresponsible products from the market whilst still allowing responsible companies to communicate with adult consumers when they choose what to drink.

"Government statistics are clear that the vast majority of adults in the UK enjoy alcohol and the vast majority do drink within the Chief Medical Officers' guidelines but we recognise that alcohol can be harmful when it is misused. Industry is determined to support government and consumers by marketing its products responsibly. By working together we can reduce the harm caused by alcohol misuse."

The report will be produced each year and is available to download from the Portman Group's website:

The report includes some alcohol trends including:

· Consumption per adult head of population is 10.2 litres which is 11% lower than the 2004 peak of 11.5 litres

· The average number of units consumed by those who drink is continuing to fall from 18.7 for men and 9.0 for women in 2006 to 16.3 and 8.0 respectively in 2009. (Government's weekly guidelines are 21 units for men and 14 for a woman)

· The proportion of men and women drinking hazardously (above 50/35 units per week) peaked in 2000 and has been declining since 2002.

· The proportion of pupils who had drunk alcohol in the past week (13%) has fallen to its lowest level since records began in 1998